India is a country of age-old traditions and customs. We have an auspicious day every day of every week, 365 days. We have set limits for everything. No brochures are issued but we know how a man ought to behave and how a woman ought to react. There are one too many curfews imposed. Our social setup is as much stifling as it is welcoming. However, when it comes to marriages we are tad too strict.
In India we have a system called as arrange marriage where our parents find a match for us. We are hardly given time to court. Most of the times a girl isn’t even allowed a glimpse of her would-be let alone courting. While there are many incidences where arrange marriages have worked far better than love marriages yet in some cases arrange marriages have led to the death of the spouse, usually the bride.
You may have heard of dowry death or female infanticide. These are like jargons in our society. Being born of second gender is a taboo amongst many others. Pre-marital sex, extra-marital sex, post marital sex is scorned upon. We aren’t allowed to say the word S.E.X out loud when in front of elders. Elders need not utter such “filth” while in company of their children. Celebrating the birth of a child born out of this process is legitimate, what isn’t accepted is public display of affection. Recently, our government banned porn, now you know where this comes from?
Learning the art of dancing or singing is often associated with profession of prostitution. We launch 104 satellites in the space, scientists in the team include women, but we adhere from setting the gender free. Gender bias is the catchphrase. We do not wish to give birth to a girl child. You see girls do not run the family heirloom, boys do. And this is the sole reason why we see paucity of girls in one of the states in India. We worship multiple Goddesses but refrain from treating our girl child as human let alone as a Godess.
Rapes are common phenomena. But to restrain these crimes we need to increase the length of our skirts. We invite rapes by provoking men by wearing skimpy outfit. No, the mindset of the individual has nothing to do with it. It is solely the skirt issue. Ah, that also implies that the women in sarees and burkha never get raped. Also, forced marital sex isn’t considered rape.
And no, this isn’t solely about women. Gender bias and patriarchal pressure is rooted far beyond that. We do not accept the second gender and the other genders do not exist for us. What exist is the law of the land which is far superior than love and humanity.
I understand, no nation is perfect. And while I love my country, for it is beautiful within, yet the pseudo moral mindset that thrives in this nation is chewing on certain facets of the society which are yet to find their voice.
- Siddhi Palande (Prasiddhi)
About the writer:
The writer is a former media professional who turned to writing novels with her debut novella “Beyond The Veil – The Journey Of An Indian Girl”
A Lawyer by profession, Janhvi Desai has lived her life on the dictates of her family. Assuming that marriage will bring in freshness and freedom she gets married to a Mumbai based engineer, Ram. But once again faces the wrath of the society. Every passing day, Janhvi Desai – Raghuvanshi finds her self-esteem diminishing as her dreams get trampled upon. But while finding the meaning of her being, her relationship with her estranged husband takes a beautiful turn. Between Ram and Janhvi rests a delicate secret and an irrevocable difference. But some relationships thrive despite the difference.
Delve into the dysfunctional world of an Indian girl where patriarchy is villain, free will far removed, where two bruised souls meet and it is only to change the definition of soul mate.
The reading enthusiasts can grab a copy of the novella on
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